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UTILICORP UNITED INC. COMMERCIAL PAPER RATED DUFF 2

 CHICAGO, July 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Duff & Phelps Credit Rating Co. has assigned an initial public rating of Duff 2 to UtiliCorp United Inc.'s (UtiliCorp) aggregate $200 million commercial paper/Euro-commercial paper program. Support for the program is provided by a $400 million multi-bank revolving credit agreement. Currently, no commercial paper is outstanding.
 The ratings on UtiliCorp's long-term fixed income securities are reaffirmed as follows: mortgage bonds `BBB+' (Triple-B-Plus), medium- term notes `BBB' (Triple-B), and preference stock `BBB-' (Triple-B-Minus).
 UtiliCorp continues to pursue its long-term growth and diversification strategy in both its regulated and non-regulated businesses. Most recently, UtiliCorp agreed to purchase natural gas facilities in Nebraska and Kansas. These assets from the soon-to-be- consummated agreements, will be integrated with the company's Peoples Natural Gas division. The significant capital outlays to fund UtiliCorp's growth and diversification program has been supported by sales of common equity as needed.
 Non-regulated energy businesses have grown to represent over one-fourth of UtiliCorp's earnings and about one-third of total capital. Non-utility operations provide an opportunity for increased profitability but carry a greater element of uncertainty. A revised business strategy for Aquila Energy includes a conservative drilling program and closer matching of long-term gas sales contracts with reserves.
 UtiliCorp provides electric and gas utility service to more than 1 million customers in eight states and the Canadian province of British Columbia. Utility operations account for the majority of operating income. UtiliCorp's nonregulated subsidiaries include Aquila Energy, which is involved in the exploration and production, gathering and processing, and marketing of natural gas, and UtilCo Group, Inc., which participates in independent power projects.
 -0- 7/8/93
 /CONTACT: John C. Dell of Duff & Phelps Credit Rating Co., 312-368-3161/
 (UCU)


CO: UtiliCorp United Inc. ST: British Columbia IN: UTI SU: RTG

SH -- NY062 -- 9535 07/08/93 13:20 EDT
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Date:Jul 8, 1993
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